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tv   [untitled]    July 31, 2012 7:00am-7:30am PDT

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>> >> we are back in open session. is there a rush we took no action during a closed session -- we took no action during a closed session that we need to disclose. there is a motion. >> so moved. >> is there a second? all in favor? public comment? >> members of the ethics
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commission. let me guess you're going to vote that nothing you discussed the subject to disclosure. i impression. i am amazed the commission seems to be exposed -- composed of no one but superhuman. and never discussed anything you should disclose. most human beings find it difficult to stay on track that closely. most human conversation can -- tends to wander off track from time to time. you, however, maintain such close control was maintained you never move on to another topic. and never discussed anything that you -- should be disclosed. wow, i am impressed. could it be that you have discussed things and having exhausted the topics, someone says we should not have this -- should discuss this as we would have to disclose that so let's disclose the discussion. we should return to the
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discussion we told the public we were going to have. what a scam. i find it incomprehensible sometimes to watch boards and commissions who will do things that just make no sense because they do it every single time. the arts commission has a habit of no one ever roads no -- votes no. every single person votes yes. i find that hard to accept. nobody disagrees with anything. and every single board and commission, it is not just you, every board and commission i go to, when the going to public comment, they come back and never disclose anything. and again, you have been in public life. you have been in public meetings, you know the tendency is to take sidetracks in conversation and i find it almost incomprehensible that every single time, people come back from the closed sessions
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and for the good of the public, they did not disclose anything that was discussed. not one single thing is mentioned ever or discussed ever, subject to disclosure. i have to wonder about the people who were the sunshine ordinance. why did they put the requirement in there that you disclose things that were discussed? that need to be disclosed. i think they accepted the human beings they are are going to occasionally discussed things which were not exactly on point with what they told the public they're going to discuss and they thought if they do that, they should disclose it. i just do not believe realistically that any group can always go into closed session and never discussed anything that is disposable. -- to disclose -- discloseable.
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>> we were in closed session for maybe tenet a -- ten minutes. we are required not to disclose the contents of the particular items we had to discuss today. all in favor of the motion to not disclose are closed session deliberation? opposed? hearing none, the motion passes. the next item on the agenda is consideration of the minutes of the regular meetings of march 26 and special meetings of april 13, april 23, may 29, june 19, june 28, and june 29.
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one -- there are competing issues with respect to the minutes of the special meeting. one is that we have a record -- a requirement -- we're required to post the minutes that have been voted on as soon as practicable or in a reasonable amount of time. we want to follow that. our other limitation, though, is many of these relate to meetings that are still in process. in other words, the beginning with the evidentiary portion of the hearing, which essentially are continuing the meeting until its completion which we hope will be on august 16. it is -- at least to me, it
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seems unusual to approve minutes for a meeting that is not yet concluded. i would ask for the staff's dew point and the viewpoint of my fellow commissioners as to whether we should adopt those or rode on those minutes. we will at some point have to adopt the minutes or wrote on the minutes. for the sessions that have occurred relating to the mirkarimi matter and the session that will occur on the 16th. we will have to adopt the minutes on the 16th anyway. should we wait until that point, or should we do these interim once dinallo and vote on the last one when we meet after august 16. commissioner renne: i thought was and so far there minutes,
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some are minutes of regular meetings which were not related to the special sessions we have been holding. that i would think that will hold off approving the mets for any of the midst relating to the mirkarimi matter and just approve the minutes for our regular meeting. because it may well be, we have mentioned at the hearings that the determinations may have been made that are reflected in some of those, for example the may 29 meetings and the june 19 meetings. there may be changed before we reach a final determination. what seemed to be premature to
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do with those at this time, we should hold off until we reach a conclusion of those meetings. >> i appreciate you raising this and i appreciate that comment. i agree that it is a balancing act between sharing information with the public and care about taking the matter as a whole. what was going through my mind is that the meetings the report on world public, every single word was -- is already public and can be interpreted by people who were there for watched it or talk about it. it is not as though these of the on the vehicle for conveying information about the meetings that are ready to place.
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i wonder if that balance could be struck. there is -- this is what i am exploring, whether we could address what commissioner renne spoke about by adding something to the mint said said the evidentiary rulings can be changed or biased, that this is part of a comprehensive proceeding that is not concluded, whenever we need to say to -- within the bounds of the document, explain what its limitations are, but which would avoid our seeming to withhold information about the steps we have already taken. i am wondering whether that would address it. it seems -- i see some downside to having them before us and not officially sharing them or
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giving them the next step or formality. i also agree that we might double back to some of the things that we did. does that help any board does that feel uncomfortable to the other commissioners i would be interested in public comment on this as well. >> one of my other concerns and i think we're leaning more toward the suggestion of adopting the meeting -- the minutes of our regular meetings but not the special meeting with respect to the mirkarimi matter. is that one thing i think we benefited from -- we would benefit from is having parties' lawyers revealed these findings and tell us if they think there are any inaccuracies. >> i would be fine with that. i think that is reasonable. >> to do that, we would have to
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give them opportunity to review and do that. we could perhaps adopt all the -- all these together when we adopt the minutes to the august 16 meeting. >> just so you're aware, the draft minutes are already public documents and there are available on request anybody who asks for them. we do not publish minutes until they have been adopted by the commission and then we have -- once you adopt them -- we adopt them, you have four days to post them. if we -- public the draft minutes and posted a change, you have two versions out there in the internet confecting. so we wait until you finally adopted and -- there are already available to the public. -- and they are already available to the public. if you wanted to do that and get comment from the attorneys of record july that would be fine. what is written is available to
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people who want them. >> ok. that would be the minutes of our regular meeting on march 26. we can adopt the minutes to the april 13 joint meeting with the sunshine ordinance task force. but the minutes regarding the official misconduct charges against mr. mirkarimi, i think we should -- welcome public comment on this matter. >> commissioners, i wanted to comment on the regular meeting minutes. in a minute of the march 26, 2012 meeting there is an example i feel they 150 word summarized discussed jet -- during general public, it is important trade and made public comment which was summarized on page 3 of this minutes as follows. he reviewed and accounting
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report issued march 1, 2012 by the friends of the library. right. i came here, waited for hours for a chance to make comment on item number five, and i only commented on the fact that i reviewed the county report. i did not say why i reviewed the report, i did not say anything about what i found in the review, i did not relate wife felt that review was relevant to the agenda item, what an idiot i am. i think most of the members of the public, if they were viewed the minutes and summer is done by the staff of not just this body but any public body, they would find nothing they said. it is nothing but century of. the purpose of the brown act and the purpose of the sunshine ordinance is to ensure that public comment is open and
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clear. that extends because it is a constitutionally protected free speech issue, a protected right to petition government for a redress of grievances and in particular, a constitutionally protected free speech right that, when someone makes public comment, they be allowed to have that accurately represented in the minutes of the meeting. it makes no difference if you can make public comment then someone can take the official record and put in their version of for you said. in many cases, with the version is, they put down all the good things you said, if you did, and exclude the things you did not. the main purpose of the brown act is to protect dissenting opinion. the sunshine ordinance expands the rights under the brown act and says very clearly and in unambiguous language as i have shown you here, i have gotten
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orders determination from the task force which were in most cases 7-48-nothing decisions saying the minutes be in the mets and that gives me an added protection that my publicly protected free speech is not going to be changed and misrepresented in the official record. the city attorney issued a memorandum which he honestly put out at the same time got a copy of the requirements for illegal memoranda and it meets one of those requirements and yet they're using that to keep public comment and the summary is that people submit out of the official record. it is censorship, pure and simple. anybody who wants to argue with the other thing and say, go read a lot, it is the same thing i've said to the library commission. read the law, it is clear. anybody who submits a 150 words or less summary of their public
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comment, that some racial be included in the mets. how you get -- attaching. just as good to be the same thing, i have a hard time understanding why so many boards and commissions to have attorneys sitting on those boards and commissions cannot seem to have much if a familiarity with constitutionally protected free speech and the right for me or any citizen of the city and county to have that politically -- politically protected free speech represented accurately in the record. except for the fact that public bodies in some cases wyck in this one, they do not like to point out the public mentioned something bad. they do not want somebody to be able to come back later and say, i told you about this. it is in the public record. they want to go back and look
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at -- he read a report. which is meaningless. >> i will break my usual practice -- all our usual practice traded to submit a 150 word report related to the accounting report? >> that one, i did not. there were not going to put them in. he has already told -- i have the letters here feel like. -- if you like them. he said we do not care what you role. the city says we do not have to turn them in. we will tell other boards. >> if we have 150 words, it would be hard. i will not argue but i want you to understand that if you're
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saying you have given us -- >> the sunshine task force will advise all city bodies on what the meaning of that ordinance is and when they come out with four of determinations including one for the city attorney saying our reading of the law is a clear reading in the minutes, this is in the minutes. i think you all know if being reasonable, the only reason you want to keep these comments at a the minutes is so the dissenting comments will be not seen. and it will be placed out of context as an attachment for people who will not read it at all or will not understand how it fit into the actual conversation at which it was injected. >> is there a motion to adopt the minutes of march 26, 2012, and april 13, 2012? >> moved. >> second.
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>> all in favor? opposed? hearing none, the motion passes. the next set -- item is the executive director's report. >> there is this one highlight i want to point out on item one. it states that one candidate has submitted an been certified. there are a lot of candidates who have come to trainings or working with staff getting guidance about how to limit their -- line up their contributions. we expect the usual time out in terms of percentages and numbers of candidates. they did seem to be in a bit of a late start. part of them maybe there were moving the application times to a little bit later. i did not want to leave the
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impression that there is no interest. in the program. i will take any questions you have after prieta >> any questions? -- i will take any questions you have afterward. >> any questions? public comment? the reports are always target- rich documents. every item deserves a full three minute public comment. our focus on no. 2 today, the investigation and enforcement program, part 2 of the sunshine ordinance category. he is off his game. by now, each of those nine complaints should have been dismissed without a hearing before the ethics commission. the one and only hearing this body has given to any sunshine ordinance task force referral was at the time of the grand jury report when it was issued and the report said you have
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never conducted a hearing. i would have a really hard time justifying the fact that in all of the hundreds of hearings, and a few dozen that were referred to this ethics commission, just one was even considered by the commissioners. in open government matters, you have effectively sided with the city and against the citizens in every single case. you can use species ways of dismissing but realistically, can you say that hundreds of citizens who filed the complaints, it gets winnowed down by the task force to a few dozen and referred to you for enforcement and yet, you cannot even bother to consider them? elect a staff dismiss them, and you simply accept it bluntly. -- you simply dismiss them, and discipline except it.
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-- you simply acceoppt it. you can say, we are try to work on this but justice delayed is justice denied and have dozens of cases that have been referred to this task force which just got dismissed about -- without anybody on the commission bothering to listen to the complainant. and you decided the city was right in the citizen was wrong. it is a denial of due process and i think that you cannot justify not here in one single complaint other than that one. it looks bad for you and it is bad given the mirkarimi situation because the only case
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you have ever heard was against jewell gomez. you voted to recommend that should be removed. the mayor ignored that. how is it going to look when you make a recommendation to the mayor and he chooses to act upon it? the first time you heard a case about official misconduct, other than a politically motivated one. >> the next item is items for future meetings. >> this goes back to the first or second commission meeting that i ever sat on was this issue of the findings that the
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commission had made about the chairman of the library. the letter that was sent to the mayor and i do not remember which of the commissioners suggested that maybe an agenda item should be a follow-up to that finding. to the mayor to demonstrate we do not necessarily what it drops in a black hole. [inaudible] if this commission should take some further action. >> i was going to follow up that item as well but i have a slightly different way of coming
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at it. i would be -- my suggestion would be that we ask the mayor for his response, ask the mayor to tell us how he has handled the letter that we sent. and i think that maybe something that does not need to await for a future meeting. my question would be, could the commissioners -- the chair sent a letter to the mayor asking that on our behalf so that we can move more expeditiously, or would it be more prudent to have us look at such a letter at a future meeting? >> you cannot authorize the chair to send the letter in this agenda item. because it is only for --
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>> it was not on our agenda for tonight. i would agree with commissioner renne, as i told you. i think we should have some follow-up on that matter.>> any? >> i will discuss it with the city attorney after the meeting. it may be that it is within the authority of the chair to do something like that. >> ok. i have no objection to having it put on the agenda for a future meeting. to request follow-up from the mayor. any other items? commissioner studley: i am interested in the report from the analyst and i am interested to put discussion of that report on our agenda. at that point, it might be useful companion for the
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executive director to tell us how he and his staff coordinate with the other cities in california with substantial ethics functions and related roles. he has told us on specific items a number of times about how those -- how the ethics officials and agencies for several california cities take advantage of each other's experience or expertise, share ideas, compare and contrast. i think this seems like something that will be a useful document for us to review and at the same time, to understand what other comparative activities: because sometimes we have already been the beneficiaries of this. -- beneficiaries of this insights and experiences, and sometimes we have jointly developed solutions to technical or policy issues.
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>> commissioner hayon: do we want to hear from mr. st. croix? or do we want to read it and see what would be useful? >> it is a good idea. this budget analyst is here in san francisco. >> he is a private contractor contract by the board. >> ok. i would be happy to invite him. i am not sure what half the budget to pay for his time is what would be -- we have the budget to pay for his time is what would be required.
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>> who signed this? ok, that is his signature? ok. it is not likely have to pay him to come and talk about the analysis. i would reconsider. if it is possible, i certainly would like to hear from him directly. >> i like that idea. any other agenda items for future meetings? >> i meant to say this earlier. in the various draft minutes related to the special meetings we have been having, there is a systematic misspelling of sheriff. somebody needs to go through and correct. left out that we knew how to do it. there is a certain list in which